Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Salted Caramel Ice Cream

This ice cream is deliciously AMAZING. Yes, with all caps. This ice cream deserves the attention. Truthfully, this is all I really need to say to describe this ice cream flavor. Once you get a scoop of this...oh boy, you`ll be in love. If you thought you were in love with food before, well, I dare you to try this and see if you were in love.

Salted caramel has been a very popular flavor recently. Over a year ago, I discovered that one of my favorite Sprinkles cupcake flavors was their salty caramel. I was actually surprised at how much I loved their buttery caramel cake. From then on, I was hooked on the salty/salted caramel flavor. When Sprinkles ice cream shop opened near my university a few months ago, I knew I had to try their salty caramel ice cream flavor as well.

Then, every ice cream store I went, I tried their version of the salty caramel. I saved so many recipes on making my own, but I was scared about making the caramel. I`m not a cook, which is why I don`t do much on the stove top. I was afraid I`ll burn my caramel and lose hope from making this.

I am glad I tried anyways. Even though I have never made caramel before, I did fine! The process went on smoothly and I was ecstatic when I had my first scoop. The salted caramel flavor definitely comes through. I basically devoured the whole batch of ice cream myself. Sometimes, I topped it with a slice of homemade caramel apple pie.

You know those moments where you taste something so great, all you want to do is close your eyes to savor it? I had those moments whenever I ate this ice cream. I was so sad when it was all gone. I`m telling the truth! All that buttery, salty, caramel goodness in ice cream form...something you cannot miss!

This is one of those recipes that has become an instant favorite. I know it`ll be a repeater for sure!

Salted Caramel Ice Cream
Adapted: Brown Eyed Baker, via D. Lebovitz | Yields: about 1 ½ quart | Level: Medium | Total Time: 45 minutes + overnight chilling time (varies) | Print  
§  2 cups whole milk, divided
§  1 ½ cups granulated sugar
§  4 tablespoons unsalted butter, sliced
§  ½ teaspoon sea salt
§  1 cup heavy cream
§  5 large egg yolks
§  1 teaspoon vanilla extract
§  ice bath/cold water (Optional)
Materials Needed:
-          Ice cream  machine
-          Stovetop
-          1 large bowl
-          1 medium bowl
-          1 small bowl
-          1 fine mesh sieve
-          1 medium saucepan
-          1 wooden spoon/heatproof spatula
-          1 whisk
-          plastic wrap
-          Refrigerator + Freezer
1.      If necessary, freeze your ice cream bowl ahead of time.
2.      Fill a large bowl with an ice bath (very cold water will do, too). Nest a medium size bowl inside the larger one.
3.      Add 1 cup of milk in the medium bowl (the one nested inside the large one) and set a fine mesh sieve on top.  Set aside until Step 13.
4.      In a medium saucepan, over medium heat, spread sugar on the bottom of the pan in an even layer. Heat until sugar starts to melt. Then, using a wooden spoon, constantly stir the sugar from the pan edges to the middle of pan until sugar is completely melted. (There will be lumps, which is supposed to happen. Don't worry.)
5.      Stir occasionally until caramel starts to turn a mahogany color, immediately turn off the heat and add in the butter and sea salt.*
6.      Stir the mixture around until butter is melted.
7.      Add the heavy cream, whisking as you go. (If the caramel hardens, melt it over low heat again.)
8.      Add 1 cup of milk and stir to combine.
9.      In a small bowl, whisk the egg yolks a little bit.
10.  While whisking, add some of the caramel mixture into the yolks.
11.  Transfer yolk mixture back into the saucepan with the caramel mixture.
12.  On low-medium heat, heat the mixture, while constantly stirring, until it thickens and coats the back of the wooden spoon.
13.  Pour the mixture through the fine mesh sieve and into the medium bowl with the milk.
14.  Stir in the vanilla.
15.  Stir the mixture over the ice bath/cold water until mixture cools down.
16.  Cover mixture with plastic wrap touching the top of the mixture. (This prevents a film from forming.)
17.  Chill mixture completely. At least 5 hours, preferably overnight.
18.  Following your ice cream machine's instruction, churn your ice cream. Have a container ready.
19.  Once ice cream is churned, transfer to container and freeze for several hours, or until your desired consistency is reached.

·         Ice bath is not completely necessary, but allow your mixture to cool down before you cover with plastic wrap and chill completely.

·         Be very careful in Step 5, as you do not want to burn your caramel.